In honor of his 32nd birthday today, we celebrate the legend of Jose Altuve by taking a look back at some of his best moments since bursting onto the scene in 2011.
5. Altuve’s first hit and homerun
The Astros had entered a rebuilding phase from 2006 to 2013, and during that time they would trade away big names to grow their farm system. In 2011, second baseman Jeff Keppinger would be dealt to the San Francisco Giants, which paved the way for the Astros to call up Jose Altuve.
Altuve’s first game would be on July 20th, 2011, in which he went one for five, with his first hit coming in the bottom of the ninth. His first home run would come exactly one month after his debut on August 20th, hitting an inside-the-park home run on the second pitch of the game off of future Hall of Famer, Madison Bumgarner.
That inside-the-park home run still remains the only inside-the-parker of Altuve’s career.
During Game One of the 2017 ALDS against the Boston Red Sox, Jose Altuve became just the ninth player in baseball history to hit three home runs during a postseason game. Altuve would join a star-studded list of players who’ve accomplished the feat such as Babe Ruth, Reggie Jackson, and Albert Pujols, just to name a few.
The Astros went on to win game one 8-2 and eventually won the ALDS series to move on to the ALCS against the New York Yankees.
Jose Altuve would become the second player in Astros history to win a league MVP award, being the first since Jeff Bagwell won the award back in 1994. Despite all the controversy surrounding the legitimacy of Altuve’s MVP victory, his stats back him up:
204 hits, 24 home runs, 81 RBIs, .346 batting average, and an on-base percentage of .410.
Altuve’s 204 hits and .346 batting average led the majors that season, which was a big reason why he won the award over rookie sensation Aaron Judge.
Altuve would keep on putting up great numbers as the years went on, as he now sits at 1,785 hits, 166 home runs, and a batting average of .307 for his career.
2. World Series Champion
Jose Altuve would add yet another career milestone to his already stacked 2017 season when he won the biggest award in baseball, the World Series.
The Houston Astros defeated the Los Angeles Dodgers four games to three in 2017 to clinch their first World Series title in franchise history, and Jose Altuve played a big part during that series.
Although Altuve hit .194 during the World Series, his two home runs came in clutch spots during games two and five, when he hit a go-ahead home run in game two, and a game-tying bomb during game five.
Altuve would record the final out that would secure the title for the city of Houston.
1. Yankee Killer
Bottom of the ninth, two outs, 2-1 count, tie game, this was the setting for Altuve’s walk-off home run in game six of the 2019 ALCS. Altuve would launch the walk-off bomb off a hanging slider from Yankees’ closer Aroldis Chapman that would send the Astros to their second World Series in three years.
Altuve would be named the ALCS MVP to add to his already stacked list of accomplishments in his career such as:
AL MVP, World Series Champion, 3x Batting Title, 5x Silver Slugger, 1x Gold Glove, 2x MLB Player of the Year, and 7x All-Star.
This home run would be the first of many crushing blows against the Yankees by Altuve in the years to come, such as a go-ahead three-run homer on his 31st birthday in Yankee stadium to give Houston the lead, and a walk-off later in the year in Houston against New York again.
Main image credit:
Embed from Getty Images